November 2022 Newsletter

Posted By: Mark Thursday 1st December 2022 Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

This month, World Cup scams; St Teresa’s Santa Run 2022; festive scams; bad passwords 2022 edition, and, we’re hiring an IT Security Technician.

Newsletter image: World Cup Scams

World Cup Scams

The 2022 FIFA World Cup kicked off on November 20th in Qatar, and with billions of football fans around the world taking a keen interest in events it’s a prime time for cybercriminals looking to take advatange. Whether it’s users looking for information, tickets, or news, fraudsters will be trying to dupe the unsuspecting with their scams to try and cash in on the distraction.

Phishing Scams, Fake Websites, SEO Poisoning & More

Security experts are warning football fans to look out for a number of online scams, fake websites and other cyberthreats piggybacking on the popularity of the tournament and the marketing machine that surrounds it.

Avast, the popular maker of cyber security tools, lists a number of common scams doing the rounds. All these tricks are looking to infect your devices with malware, steal passwords for online accounts, dupe you into giving up personal and sensitive financial details, and other efforts to empty your bank account or crypto wallet.

Ticket scams

Scammers are looking to take advantage of FOMO (fear of missing out) and offering dodgy tickets for sold out games via email, social media or fake websites. With reports of people trying to sell physical tickets to games, it’s worth knowing that FIFA is only using digital tickets via their online platform for this World Cup.

Lottery Scams

Cybercriminals are taking advantage of people wanting to see their team play by offering competition draws to win flights, hotels and match tickets. These are easy to get mixed up within genuine prize offerings, so take extra care and do your research before entering anything!

SEO Poisoning

Scams of this nature take advantage of the huge amount of users searching for World Cup information – fixtures, results, tables, team news, etc. Cybercriminals aim to position their fake websites within the search results returned for common search terms, hoping to lure users onto malware-infected sites. Always carefully check the url before clicking through to anywhere.

Social Networks

Again, taking advantage of users checking for tournament information, cybercriminals will be flooding the networks with misinformation, dodgy links and scam offers.

Phishing, Smishing & Malware

Spam emails, texts and dodgy ads pretending to be World Cup news will be through the roof, trying to trick people into clicking on links or downloading files. There are all trying to stealing credentials and/or infect devices with malware.

Avoiding World Cup Scams

Avast offers advice to stay safe while following the tournament:

  • Stick to official sites and app marketplaces when downloading software and updates, avoid downloading apps from third parties. This puts your device at risk of being infected by malicious software or malware which may allow hackers to gain control over your device and access your data.
  • Avoid clicking on suspicious links, such as links sent from unknown senders, regarding purchases, for example, that you did not make, or related to accounts you do not have, or links that do not match the service being referred to in messages. This allows cybercriminals to access your information and install spyware, ransomware or any type of malware on your devices.
  • Enable two-factor authentication wherever possible. This adds an extra layer of protection on your device. If a hacker gains access to your account by securing confidential passwords, the intruder will no longer be able to access your information as a password is not enough, the owner of the account must approve the second factor.
  • Use a strong and unique password when you create an online account, or even better, use a password manager to take care of this for you. Passwords act as the first line of security against hackers accessing your devices and personal data.
  • Use a reliable antivirus or security software. This allows continuous protection against online threats or attacks by detecting and taking action against malicious software on devices. Antivirus software is an essential step to maintaining full protection over your information and having a good security strategy.

Don’t forget that all these types of scams, mentioned above, can affect your business systems. We offer a full range of cyber security services to keep your company safe from cyber threats. If you’re a business in the North-East of England contact us for further information.

Newsletter Image: St Teresa's Santa Run 2022

St Teresa’s Santa Run 2022

When it comes to supporting worthy causes it’s not about the money, it’s about what’s good for the community. We support a number of local charities, and our “More Than One” policy sees us donating computer equipment on a regular basis.

We work with our current clients to find their old equipment a new home when they upgrade to new systems, meaning the good causes get much-needed equipment, and so can concentrate on putting their money into their support services. Meanwhile, our clients get to be environmentally conscious by recycling their systems and avoid it going to land fill.

One such great cause that we’ve come to partner with in 2022 is St Teresa’s Hospice, a registered charity providing palliative and end-of-life care and support in South Durham & North Yorkshire.

LaneSystems are proud to be an event sponsor for this year’s Santa Run at West Park Academy on Sunday 4th December, at 11am. The Santa Run is their annual family favourite festive fun run, featuring four race options – Santa Sprint, Reindeer Run, Elf Amble or Virtual Run. So, whether you’re a racing runner, a gentle jogger, or a wombling walker, there’s a fun run for every level.

Every participant will receive a Santa suit, or a hat for children, and there is no entry fee for anyone under five. Dogs are welcome too! You can complete the circuit at your own speed, and as an early Christmas present you will receive a medal and refreshments when you cross the finish line!

As well as sponsoring the event, we’ll be providing the refreshments. We’d love as many people as possible to take part, have some fun, make a donation, and raise some money to help the amazing work that St Teresa’s do.

Newsletter image: We're Hiring

We’re Hiring – IT Security Technician

We are currently recruiting for an IT Security Technician to join our growing and successful support team. You will become part of our friendly team of support technicians providing first class IT support to our widely varied client portfolio.

You will help to improve and maintain client security, manage deployments of security software and respond to alerts. You will also help clients to achieve Cyber Essentials certification as well as managing firewalls and patch deployment.

Read full details of the vacancy here.

Newsletter image: Festive Fraud Tips

Festive Fraud Tips

Online shopping is big business and the growth in online sales is up year-on-year. We’ve had the Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales, and now we’re in to the run-up to Christmas. Lots of online transactions in play.

Of course, it means it’s also prime time for the cybercriminals who hope to dupe unsuspecting shoppers into handing over their hard-earned money or their credit card details.

Common Shopping Scams

NatWest is highlighting a number of things to look out for when shopping, to keep people cyber safe.

Don’t Get Caught Out Buying Online

Everyone loves a bargain, and super low prices are particularly tempting in the current economic climate. But, be careful if you’re being seeing websites or online adverts with prices way below what you’d normally be expecting to pay. If a deal is too good to be true, it’s usually always a scam, with fake goods, or even no goods whatsoever.

Do your research; check out the seller details and look for markers such as how long they’ve been in around, any reviews over a long period of time, the quality of contact details such as address, telephone number and other means of getting in touch, etc.

Use Secure Websites

While it doesn’t guarantee a site or seller is reputable, make sure sites where you’re entering payment details and other personal information, are using HTTPS in their web address. This means that the connection is secure, so that when your sensitive information is submitted, no one can eavesdrop on it in transit.

Choose A Safe Payment Method

Pay for things with your credit card to get certain legal protections for it things go wrong. If you’re being asked to send cash or make a money transfer, be very wary.

Don’t Open Unexpected Emails from anyone you don’t know

We say this regularly, but fake emails and texts are always doing the rounds. Be careful of any emails, texts, phone calls, social media messages, etc, that appear to come from a genuine business. Fraudsters use these phishing techniques to try and steal your personal information. Don’t click on any links or download any files. If you’re unsure, contact the company using details found on their actual website.

Don’t Give Out Your Sensitive Details

Scammers will often get in touch and claim to be your bank, law enforcement, utilities, etc, and ask for login details, passcodes, card reader codes, and other financial information. They’ll often ask to be given remote access to your device or tell you to transfer money from your account to another to prevent you from being the victim of a scam. Never do it, that’s the scam!

Think You’ve Been Scammed?

Don’t feel guilty, stupid and embarrassed. Cybercriminals are sophisticated and can be very convincing. If you think you’ve fallen victim to a scam, the National Cyber Security Centre has the advice and help you need.

If you think you may have been a victim of fraud or cyber crime, and live in England, Wales or Northern Ireland, you should report this to Action Fraud at or by calling 0300 123 2040. If you live in Scotland, you should report to Police Scotland by calling 101.

Newsletter Image: Bad Passwords 2022

Bad Passwords 2022

It’s that time of the year when NordPass releases its annual damning tale of the most common used passwords, and all the old favourites are still showing up.

Even though people are continuing to become more aware of the need for good cyber security practices, way too many are still falling into the habit of using — and re-using — very weak passwords.

Top Ten Passwords Of 2022

In the UK, specifically, it’s:

All of these passwords would be broken in seconds, and many instances are probably down to the unchanged default passwords set on devices that connect to the internet.

Password hygiene basics

NordPass gives its tips on how to create and maintain a good quality set of passwords to keep your accounts safe.

Think long and complex

A complex password is one that contains at least 12 characters and a variety of upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. Using a password generator is the easiest way to create complex passwords.

Don’t reuse passwords

A single password for multiple accounts makes a hacker’s job that much easier. If only one of the accounts is compromised, all of your other accounts become jeopardized.

Audit your accounts

Regularly check which accounts you’re still using and which you no longer access. Unused accounts can put your security online at risk because you may not notice when they get breached.

Check password strength and update regularly

Regularly assess your password health. Identify weak, reused, or old passwords and fortify your online security with new, complex ones.

Use a password manager

Using a password manager to securely store and access your passwords is the simplest and most efficient way to boost your overall online security.

Newsletter image: Christmas Opening Hour Changes 2022

Christmas Opening Hour Changes 2022

Our opening hours for Christmas and New Year are:

Date Opening Times
Friday 23rd December 07:00 – 18:00
Monday 26th December CLOSED
Tuesday 27th December CLOSED
Wednesday 28th December 07:00 – 18:00
Thursday 29th December 07:00 – 18:00
Friday 30th December 07:00 – 18:00
Monday 2nd January CLOSED

Please could you let us know your adjusted opening hours during the Christmas and New Year period.

Thank you.